Be Well: My Favorite Products - Clear Skin Edition

DSC_1537

I realized yesterday that it's been quite awhile since I last wrote about my favorite beauty products. The products I use and the routine I follow have actually changed quite a bit in the last few months, so I figured it was about time I filled you all in!

As you may remember from some of my other posts, I've been in an almost life-long struggle with my skin. I've been fighting the good fight against acne for 10-15 years now. Some days have been darker than others (middle school, when I went on Accutane for the first time and it gave me the worst acne of my life for several months, when my dermatologist unexpectedly died of a drug overdose, etc.) but the issue has always been there.

After trying to hack it on my own for the last year, I finally decided to visit a well-reviewed facialist in my neighborhood - leave no stone unturned, right? During my first appointment she was full of optimistic statements about all the changes I was going to see in my skin if I adopted her regimen. To say that I was skeptical of those statements would be the understatement of the year. But hope springs eternal, so I somewhat begrudgingly bought the products she recommended to me, and went home and stuck to the skincare regimen she recommended to me like my life depended on it.

And you know what? It worked. Okay, my skin is far from perfect. FAR from perfect, still. But the products she turned me onto (mostly natural stuff) have caused a noticeable improvement. I always thought that my skin problems were internal - after years of religiously washing, moisturizing, and applying acne treatments to my skin, I thought I was beyond help. But it seems like my skin was revolting against all the unnatural ingredients in the products I was using. It's almost depressing to think that some of my worst acne troubles could have been lessened by just swapping out what I was putting on my face.

All of this is the VERY long way of saying that I'd like to introduce a few of those products to you now - this isn't all of what I'm using, but it's a good start.

DSC_1538

DSC_1541

First up: La Bella Donna mineral foundation. When my facialist first recommended that I switch to this foundation, my only reaction was NO. WAY. NO WAY is that loose powder going to be enough to cover all the redness, scarring, and acne I have hanging out on my face. But my facialist insisted I let her try some on me, which helped me realized that this stuff provides a surprising amount of coverage. I also realized I needed to embrace that skincare is a continuous loop - having bad acne makes you want to put heavy makeup on your skin, which causes bad acne. I desperately needed to break out of that cycle, and this foundation did it for me.

DSC_1552

Osmosis facial cleansers. This stuff just makes my skin feel good. I wash with "Cleanse" in the shower every morning and "Purify" with my Clarisonic brush every night. My facialist advised trying to wash my face for two minutes straight every morning and every night - something I've been sticking to.

DSC_1556And my last (new) favorite product - an everyday makeup brush cleaner, which can be found at Sephora. Seriously - how was I not using this before? I've always been pretty good about cleaning my makeup brushes, but I would only get the opportunity to do a full clean every few weeks (or months, when I got lazy). Now I use this stuff every day - you just spray a bit on the brush you just used and rub that brush on a clean towel to remove the makeup. I feel so much better about the tools I'm using on my skin now - I can't recommend it enough. Plus, it's only $7!

----

Well, another fun weekend comes to a close. Some of our weekend's highlights included: making a return trip to TBD for dinner on Friday night because they have the most paleo-friendly menu I've seen, getting about 10 hours of sleep Friday night after an exhausting week, going to brunch with friends on Saturday morning, cooking on Saturday night for the first time in FOREVER, then spending Sunday walking around in the beautiful weather, taking a nap, making a big dinner, and, as always, watching Mad Men.

The only sad part of the weekend was not getting to be home for Mother's Day and my brother's graduation. I love living in San Francisco, but living 2,000 miles away from your family never stops being hard. Luckily, my youngest brother and sister are coming to visit this Thursday, and I couldn't be more excited. Not only do I get to spend three fun-filled days with them, but their arrival marks the end of our Whole30. Pretty great stuff.

Have a wonderful Monday.